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New Paper Debunks Desperate Rationalization for Private Equity: Lower Volatility Based on Bogus Valuations

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A new paper by Jeff Hooke and Ken Yook of John Hopkins argues that "smoothed," as in phony, private equity valuations are misleading.
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The new generation of computers is programming itself | Sebastian Thrun and Chris Anderson

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Educator and entrepreneur Sebastian Thrun wants us to use AI to free humanity of repetitive work and unleash our creativity. In an inspiring, informative conversation with TED Curator Chris Anderson, Thrun discusses the progress of deep learning, why we shouldn't fear runaway AI and how society will be better off if dull, tedious work is done with the help of machines. "Only one percent of interesting things have been invented yet," Thrun says. "I believe all of us are insanely creative ... [AI] will empower us to turn creativity into action."

Download video: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/TEDTalks_video/~5/xMpN-4wbICI/SebastianThrunandChrisAnderson_2017U.mp4
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Things commonly smuggled into North Korea’s surprisingly robust black market

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North Korea has one of the most closed economies in the world, but items from bibles to K-pop videos find a way across its borders anyway. These are some of the most commonly smuggled items in the isolated country.



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The best documentaries hiding on Netflix, according to Rotten Tomatoes

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The White Helmets

Netflix won its first Oscar this year, not for a feature film, but for a documentary short about Syrian first responders called The White Helmets. Another Netflix documentary, Ava DuVernay’s 13th was also nominated for an Academy Award.

The streaming-video service, which is still establishing itself in film, has cultivated a thriving library of documentaries on history, crime, politics, nature, art, and other subjects that are worth checking out this holiday season while you’re digesting on the couch.

These are the best of the best, according to Rotten Tomatoes:

Title Tomatometer score Audience score
The Square (2013) 100 90
Tower (2016) 100 90
Man On Wire (2008) 100 87
We Were Here (2011) 100 86
Jiro Dreams Of Sushi (2011) 99 92
How To Survive A Plague (2012) 99 83
Anvil! The Story Of Anvil (2008) 98 90
Blackfish (2013) 98 90
Iris (2014) 98 90
Beware Of Mr. Baker (2012) 98 87
The Overnighters (2014) 98 85
Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me (2013) 98 79
Surfwise (2007) 98 65

Data: Rotten Tomatoes, Netflix

That’s from a Quartz analysis of documentary films streaming on Netflix in the US that earned positive reviews from at least 98% of critics on Rotten Tomatoes and were “certified fresh” on the Tomatometer—meaning they consistently scored well in at least 80 reviews for wide-releases and 40 for limited-releases, including five reviews from top critics. The movies were sorted based on the share of the audience on the site that liked them, too.

Documentaries that didn’t meet that threshold but scored with 100% of critics on Rotten Tomatoes include Paris Is Burning, an award-winning documentary about New York’s drag scene in the 1980s; The White Helmets; and Street Fight, which chronicles Cory Booker’s failed 2002 bid to become mayor of Newark, New Jersey.

About 40% of the 60 best movies hiding on Netflix are documentaries, Quartz found in an earlier analysis.

And that’s just movies. Netflix also has more than 350 documentary series. Quite a few are BBC, PBS, and National Geographic titles that don’t appear on Rotten Tomatoes. And others like Abstract, Chef’s Table, Planet Earth, and Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, were well-liked by audiences who reviewed them, but weren’t rated by critics on the site.

Here’s a short list that’s worth your time:

  • Ken Burns: The Roosevelts: An Intimate History
  • Night Will Fall (TV movie)
  • Making a Murderer
  • Five Came Back
  • Oklahoma City
  • The Keepers
  • Maya Angelou: And I Still Rise (TV movie)


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If oceans stopped absorbing heat from climate change, life on land would average 122°F

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Since the 1970s, more than 93% of excess heat captured by greenhouse gases has been absorbed by the oceans. To understand how much heat that is, think of it this way: If the oceans weren’t absorbing it, average global temperatures on land would be far higher—around 122°F, according to researchers on the documentary Chasing Coral. The global average surface temperature right now is 59°F.

A 122°F world, needless to say, would be unlivable. More than 93% of climate change is out of sight and out of mind for most of us land-dwelling humans, but as the oceans continue to onboard all that heat, they’re becoming unlivable themselves.

Ocean temperatures are the highest since record-keeping began, and hundreds of marine species are suffering because of it. Recent back-to-back coral bleaching events—triggered by too-hot sea temperatures—have killed off significant portions (paywall) of the Great Barrier Reef, and a recent UN report warned that the world’s most significant coral reefs could die out completely by the end of the century, if not sooner.

“Warming is projected to exceed the ability of reefs to survive within one to three decades for the majority of the World Heritage sites containing corals reefs,” the report said.

Scientists worry that the warming ocean also risks releasing billions of tons of frozen methane from the thawing seabed. Unlocking that methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, could trigger significant warming here on land.





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As migrants are being evicted from Beijing, 'low-end population' hoodies go on sale on Taobao

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As migrants are being evicted from Beijing, 'low-end population' hoodies go on sale on Taobao With thousands of migrant workers are being kicked out of their homes in Beijing, one Taobao seller has found a way to capitalize upon the widespread public outrage that the city's eviction campaign has unleashed. [ more › ]
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